Thoroughly Modern Millie

Date 26th July 2012
Society Orrell Musical & Dramatic Society
Venue St Michael's Parish Hall ,, Wigan
Type of Production Musical
Director Jackie Webb
Musical Director Linda Scott


Author: Wendy Newton

Choreographer: Charlotte Morrell

This show can be a really difficult one to cope with; casting, staging and all of the logistical difficulties that go with it, can bring on nightmares! There are real logistical problems with this venue, lack of space, curtains, wings, bars for lights etc. but if that’s what you have to work with then that’s what you have to work with; be inventive and if your clever enough then hopefully it will come off! Any Production Team needs to be brave and experienced to do it .
It’s “Girl Power” behind this production though and they seemed to have taken it in their stride. Jackie Webb (Producer), Charlotte Morrell (Choreographer) and Linda Scott(M.D.) did a sterling job with this production.
All of the numbers in the show were well sung, well directed and well choreographed, all totally in keeping with the 1920’s style. Casting needs to be right and indeed it was, all of the roles were well cast for each individual from principals to supporting roles and chorus.
There of course needs to be a great “Millie”. It’s an enormous role with 8 solo numbers alone needing stamina and expertise in musical theatre, so Paula Waring filled that criteria brilliantly, with not a foot or note wrong, with a great voice and projection.
David Simm (Jimmy Smith) played well, very cool and with great facial expression.
Diane Jones (Mrs Meers) was great in this part and handled all two accents really well performing a good character role with some nice comedy.
All of the other supporting Principal roles were really well portrayed but particularly David Jones & Alison Roberts (Ching Ho & Bun Foo) great character’s and their “Chinese” was very effective. I wondered whether it was real? I think it was! - anyway very well done, and very funny indeed.
Chorus numbers were well performed, well sung and movement good. Costumes were fabulous with some scenes colour co-ordinated and even the use of white gloves in ultraviolet lighting during the office scene I felt was very clever and effective; if I was going to be picky some of the wigs were a bit dodgy though.
The band though only small gave a big sound, although didn’t overpower the cast, all of whom projected really well.
Set and Staging was well designed and constructed within the company in order to fit the requirements of the venue. Good sound and lighting topped it all off nicely. Congratulations to you all, you need not have had any doubts! Upward and Onward!
Thank you to the committee, production team, cast and crew for a really lovely evening, I thoroughly enjoyed the show and felt warmly welcomed by your authentically dressed front of house staff!